Water Main Breaks at Calif. Fire Academy, Leaves Sinkhole

Burbank fire academy classrooms were damaged and a 15-foot deep sinkhole was discovered.


June 18--Spillage from a broken water main may have closed down the Burbank Fire Department's training facility but it turned streets into a mini-water park for neighbors and children.

Footage from KTLA showed children frolicking on Ontario Street on Tuesday evening, and in some cases, using inner-tubes to ride the rushing water that closed off parts of neighboring streets for hours.

"We've never seen this much water," resident Diana Lucas told the news station. "This is the most exciting thing that's ever happened on our street actually."

Another resident told KTLA that when he heard about the broken water main, his family rushed outside, leaving dinner on the table.

Roughly 69 homes were left without water, but it has since been restored.

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The fire department received a call about 5:08 p.m. Tuesday from a resident about water flooding the parking lot of its training center at 1845 N. Ontario St. Firefighters then discovered the broken main.

The rushing water caused the center's asphalt parking lot to cave, creating a sinkhole 30 feet in diameter and 15 feet deep, said Burbank Fire Capt. Peter Hendrickson.

"It had a lot of force," he said about the water.

The training center, which houses the city's emergency operations center, is closed. Roughly six inches of water seeped into the building, causing damage to the floors and classrooms. Power to the center was immediately shut off, Hendrickson said.

Hendrickson said he did not know when the training center would reopen. For now, any emergency operations would be conducted from the Burbank Police Department's location.

Surrounding homes were free of water damage, thanks to the storm draining system, which filtered much of the runoff.

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